Nov 14th: ourIDEA Calls for a Moratorium on Catholic School Construction

Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

Education Advocates Call for a Moratorium on Catholic School Construction

ourIDEA: Inclusive, Diverse, Education for All

ALBERTA - ourIDEA – a coalition of Albertans proposing the unification of the province’s separate and public school jurisdictions -- believes that the first school built in every new neighbourhood should be a public school. They have launched a call for the provincial government to issue a:

  • Moratorium on the construction of new separate schools pending the final outcome of a recent relevant Saskatchewan court case. Earlier this year a judge in Saskatchewan ruled that operational funding to Catholic schools for non-Catholic students must cease. We believe the same principle applies to the capital funding of separate school facilities for any non-Catholic enrolment in separate schools.
  • Alternately, ourIDEA calls on the provincial government to issue a Moratorium pending the completion of a comprehensive and transparent review of the criteria that determine approval of new school construction. The construction of new separate schools is typically approved without any evidence of non-Catholic enrolment in separate schools and such enrolment is discretionary. Separate school jurisdictions should be required to transfer non-Catholic students to the public school system to accommodate new Catholic enrolment, before any new separate school is built.

Earlier this month, ourIDEA launched a petition calling for a referendum on the continuance of separate Catholic school boards.  

"We invite Albertans to join us in a campaign calling for a referendum on the unification of Public and Catholic school boards. From Milk River to Keg River, and from Lloydminster to Blairmore, it is time for a thoughtful conversation, involving every interested Albertan, about why we duplicate administration and services, and operate under-utilized schools, to preserve a denominational privilege that is out of keeping with current human rights practices and may no longer be relevant.”

“The recent provincial budget revealed serious on-going financial shortfalls for the provincial government.  In education, this raises questions about duplicating administration and infrastructure costs when the money could be re-directed to the classroom for better service to students or reduced costs to parents.  Imagine how much further school fees could have been reduced without the current cost of duplication.” – David King, Former Education Minister

SPECIAL EVENT: On November 27th at 7PM, ourIDEA will be hosting a panel discussion and conversation with the audience on the future of Separate School Boards with panelists David King, a former Minister of Education in Alberta, parent advocate Luke Fevin and former Catholic School Trustee Patricia Grell.  Everyone is welcome, and an RSVP is requested – University of Alberta (Telus Building Room 150) (For tickets please visit:

Visit to sign the petition and learn more.  

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Alberta Catholic School Trustees Association AGM November 17-19th, Edmonton (ACSTA) AGM:

Quotes from the Saskatchewan case by Justice Layh:

Capital Project Financial Report (Alberta Government): AR 97671



Visit to sign the petition and learn more.  


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